Long Haired Larry’s Caesar Salad Dressing

Utila sunset

Speaking of pirate recipes, Arrrr!!! Here be one I picked up from a Canadian expat I met in my travels – Long Haired Larry A.K.A. ‘Cowboy’ to the inhabitants of the small island of Utila off the coast of Honduras. An interesting and kind character, always accompanied by his sidekick dog ‘Pirate’, he’d often graciously invite me and other transients to dinner at his tropical hut on stilts surrounded by his jungle garden.

Long Haired Larry

Don’t Worry, Be Larry

His kitchen was small and utilitarian like a ship-shape galley. The open cut out window by the sink was a direct deposit to the compost pile below, eliminating the task of emptying completely! The water supply, a 5 gallon jug – spout side up with a hand pump on the top. He loved to BBQ and dinners were cooked on a round marine charcoal grill hung off his porch deck. I’d sit atop one of his homemade bar stools made of twisted vines and take note of his cooking which was slow, genial and social. At one time he owned a popular restaurant bar and grill on the island strip called ‘Skid Row’, where I first met him bantering with locals one night. His food was always the best tasting anything you ever had, but we’d sometimes joke that it might just be attributed to how long it took. Ever bake a potato on a charcoal grill? Even if you weren’t hungry when it started, by the time it was ready you were stAARRRving!

dogs at Tranquilla Bar

Pirate (brown) and Charger hanging at the bar

There were two staples at every meal I shared with him: a whole baked potato with ‘crema’, a Central American sour cream and a romaine lettuce and parmesan cheese Caesar Salad with his homemade dressing.

Caesar dressing ingredients

Here in my journal is the recipe for his Caesar Salad Dressing:

  • Garlic
  • Dijon mustard
  • Red wine vinegar
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Lime juice
  • Salt & pepper

Nondescript, I know, but I made some the other night that was spot on.

I threw in the Magic Bullet blender 3 cloves of garlic, about a Tbsp of Dijon horseradish mustard (or whatever kind you have), 3 Tbsp of vinegar, a small chunk of parmesan, 1/2 the juice of a lime, and the left over seasoned oil from a small jar of marinated artichokes and a few grinds of S&P.  Reuse the artichoke jar as a container for the dressing.

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